Video courtesy of Beloved Women with Christina Patterson

It was a warm summer evening, and Fancie sat by the window, her Bible open to the Book of Psalms.

As she read David’s words, “My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. When can I go and meet with God?” (Psalm 42:2), a familiar ache stirred within her.

Like David, she yearned for a deeper connection with the Lord, a tangible sense of His presence.

Fancie had been a Christian for years, ever since her college roommate shared the good news found in the New Testament.

She had experienced the joy and peace that came from knowing Christ as her Savior. But there were times when God felt distant, and her faith felt like a routine rather than a vibrant relationship.

As she closed her Bible, Fancie wondered how she could experience the presence of God more consistently.

She knew that the presence of the Lord was central to the Christian faith, the very thing that set it apart from mere religion.

Without His manifest presence, how could she truly live a victorious Christian life, overflowing with joy, peace, and power?

Fancie remembered the stories of heroes of the faith, like Moses, whose face shone after encountering God’s glory.

She thought of the disciples on the Day of Pentecost, filled with the Holy Spirit’s presence in a powerful way. Surely, if they could experience such intimacy with God, there must be a way for her to do the same.

With a renewed sense of determination, Fancie resolved to seek out the answer to her question:

“How can I experience the presence of God consistently in my daily life?”

What Does The Manifest Presence of God Mean?

The Manifest Presence of God

In Exodus, we read how God’s presence appeared visibly to the Israelites as a pillar of cloud by day and fire by night. The manifest presence of God led the people through the wilderness.

When Moses met with God on Mount Sinai, the presence of the Lord rested on the mountain like a consuming fire (Exodus 24:17 NIV).

“To the Israelites the glory of the Lord looked like a consuming fire on top of the mountain.”

In 1 Kings 8, at the dedication of Solomon’s temple, the priests could not enter the temple because the glory of the Lord filled the place. God’s tangible presence was overpowering.

The Holy Spirit now dwells within every believer in Christ. We do not see a physical manifestation of God’s glory.

However, we can experience God’s presence, peace, love, and power every day.

The writer of Hebrews encourages us to “draw near to God and He will draw near to you” (James 4:8 NKJV).

Experiencing God’s presence starts with developing a deep, sincere hunger for Him. The more we seek the Lord, the more we experience His manifest presence.

How to Experience The Presence of God

Experience The Presence of God

1. Start with worship and thanksgiving

Entering God’s presence begins with an attitude of gratitude.

The Psalms are filled with exhortations to “bless the Lord, O my soul” (Psalm 103:1 NKJV) and “enter His gates with thanksgiving” (Psalm 100:4 NKJV).

As you reflect on God’s goodness, your heart is prepared to experience Him.

Spend time thinking about the blessings in your life – your salvation, family, friends, provisions.

Let your heart well up with thanksgiving to God. Put on worship music and lift your voice in praise.

Focus completely on the Lord in worship, and you’ll soon experience His sweet presence.

2. Pray and seek God’s face

After starting with a heart of gratitude, keep drawing near to God in prayer.

Pour out your heart to Him. Tell God how much you want more of His presence. Declare your deep need and thirst for Him. Be real and transparent in your prayers.

In addition to asking, make sure to listen quietly before the Lord. Be still and attuned to His voice through the Word or His inner promptings.

Don’t just pray at God – take time to pray to Him. Wait in His presence expectantly.

The Lord rewards those who diligently seek Him (Hebrews 11:6 NKJV). Seeking God’s face leads to knowing Him and experiencing His presence intimately.

3. Meditate on God’s Word

Meditate on God's Word

The Bible is called the Word of God for a reason – His presence permeates Scripture.

When you meditate on God’s Word, you’ll encounter His very heart and mind. The Word will give you insight into His character and draw you closer to Him.

Pick a passage like Psalm 139 or Philippians 4. Read it slowly several times. Let the words soak into your spirit. Picture what’s being described.

Turn Bible verses into prayers. The goal is to allow the Scripture to come alive to you and feel God’s presence through His Word.

4. Yield your life completely

God’s manifest presence flows through surrendered vessels.

When you hold anything back from the Lord or live in disobedience, it blocks the free flow of His Spirit. Examine your life for any areas not yielded to God.

Confess and repent of all known sins. Give the Lord complete access to every compartment of your life – relationships, career, finances, habits, etc.

As you surrender fully, God will fill you fully with His presence and power.

5. Step out in faith

Step out in faith

While experiencing God’s presence involves your posture and attitude, there’s an element of faith to it as well. You have to trust that God is with you and step out in that confidence.

When Elijah heard God speaking in a still, small voice, he wrapped his face in his mantle and went out to stand before the Lord (1 Kings 19:13 NKJV). He responded in faith to the prompting of God’s Spirit.

As you sense the Lord leading, step out in faith! Trust that His presence goes with you. Walk with holy boldness knowing God is right there.

Step into your calling, share your faith, and follow His lead. Faith and obedience unlock greater depths of God’s presence.

6. Remove distractions

It’s hard to be tuned into God’s subtle presence when you are preoccupied with many things.

Remove distractions when you want to experience the Lord’s presence. Turn off screens, silence notifications, and find a quiet place to seek Him.

Schedule set-aside, unhurried time with the Lord. Eliminate busyness and interruptions during your quiet time. Give God your full, undivided attention.

The more distractions you remove, the more you can focus on seeking His face.

The Rewards of God’s Presence

The Rewards of God's Presence

Why is experiencing God’s presence so crucial? What are the blessings and rewards of cultivating intimacy with the Lord?

There are too many to list, but here are some key ones:

  • Joy: In God’s presence, there is fullness of joy (Psalm 16:11 NKJV). His joy is our strength (Nehemiah 8:10 NKJV). You’ll know His manifest presence when unspeakable joy starts bubbling up.
  • Peace: Peace transcends circumstances. During turbulent times, God’s presence brings a deep sense of peace. “My presence will go with you, and I will give you rest,” God promised Moses (Exodus 33:14 NKJV).
  • Guidance: God’s presence is your ever-present guide. “Your hand shall guide me,” the Psalmist proclaimed (Psalm 139:10 NIV). You can count on God’s wisdom and direction when you stay connected to Him.
  • Hope: God’s presence will give you an unshakable, confident hope for the future. You have hope because Emmanuel – God with us – holds your present and future.
  • Victory: In God’s presence, no enemy can stand against you. Though trials remain, you are more than a conqueror through Christ. You’ll triumph because the Lord goes before you.
  • Favor: When you carry God’s presence, it attracts favor. His joy and peace are a testimony to others. Doors open and relationships blossom. You are blessed to be a blessing.

Above all, God’s presence brings the profound blessing of knowing Him more deeply. Experiencing His manifest presence is your ultimate reward – both now and for eternity.

Key Takeaways

  • God’s presence is available to every believer through faith in Christ.
  • You must seek God daily and dedicate time to know Him more.
  • As you draw near to God, He promises to draw near to you.
  • God’s presence brings great blessings like joy, peace, and victory.
  • Experiencing God’s presence starts with developing a deep hunger for Him.

In Summary

Experiencing the manifest presence of God is our great privilege as believers.

As you spend time beholding the Lord, you are transformed into His image (2 Corinthians 3:18 NIV). His presence will empower you to follow Christ wholeheartedly.

May you earnestly seek the Lord daily and encounter His life-changing presence in a fresh way!

Frequently Asked Questions about God’s Presence

Q. How can I know if God’s presence is with me?

A. You’ll know God’s presence when you experience supernatural joy, peace, hope, strength, or favor beyond your circumstances.

Pay attention to your spiritual and emotional state. The Lord’s presence brings deep inner transformation.

As you stay in Scripture, prayer, worship, and obedience, you’ll start to recognize the spiritual markers indicating God’s manifest presence with you.

Q. I don’t feel God’s presence like I used to. Did I do something wrong?

A. It’s common to go through seasons spiritually. Sometimes we struggle to sense God’s presence like before. But He promises that He will never leave or forsake us (Deuteronomy 31:6 NIV).

Our feelings don’t always reflect reality. Keep seeking the Lord in faith, even when you can’t “feel” His presence.

Stay anchored to Scriptural truth about God’s faithfulness. He’s still right there with you.

Q. How can I cultivate daily consistency in experiencing God’s presence?

A. It takes tremendous discipline and intentionality to prioritize your relationship with the Lord daily. But consistency is key.

Set a regular quiet time and stick to it. Have a specific plan for your time with God. Eliminate distractions and excuses that hinder your devotions. Ask a friend to keep you accountable.

Approach each day expecting a new touch from the Lord, and you’ll grow in consistency.

Q. What are some hindrances to experiencing God’s presence?

A. Sin and disobedience will block you from God’s presence. Examine your heart for those areas, confess, and repent.

Busyness and spiritual apathy will also distance you from the Lord. Remove distractions and stir up spiritual hunger.

Doubting God’s promises, faithfulness, or ability to meet your needs will hinder experiencing Him. Renew your mind with Scripture to build faith and trust.

Lastly, not spending time seeking Him will prevent you from encountering His presence.

Q. How can I share God’s presence with unbelievers?

A. The best way to share God’s presence is to live in it daily yourself, through a vibrant relationship with Jesus.

When others encounter your life, they should sense the love, joy, peace, and hope of Christ in you.

Be prepared to give the reason for the hope you have (1 Peter 3:15 KJV). Share your testimony of God’s work.

Explain the gospel clearly when you feel led. The Holy Spirit working through your life is the most powerful way to reveal God’s presence to unbelievers.

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